Calgary Flames left wing Milan Lucic (17) chases down the puck as the San Jose Sharks defenseman Erik Karlsson (65) is in pursuit at the SAP Center in San Jose on Apr 7, 2022 (AP News photo)
By Mary Walsh
SAN JOSE– The San Jose Sharks lost to the Calgary Flames for the first time this season, by a score of 4-2 at SAP Center. It was the Sharks’ fifth loss in a row. For Calgary, the win was the capstone for a California sweep after they won in Los Angeles and Anaheim. Matthew Tkachuk, Trevor Lewis, and Elias Lindholm scored for the Flames. Dan Vladar made 31 saves for the win. Nick Bonino and Logan Couture scored for the Sharks. James Reimer made 32 saves before being injured in the third period. Kaapo Kahkonen made five saves in relief.
After the game, Sharks Head Coach Bob Boughner said:
“Our execution could be better. From a compete standpoint, and for being in games with some of the top teams, you know, we’re banging heads with them. I think that I always come back to the same thing: it’s tough to win games when you’re only scoring one and two. I know I sound like a broken record.”
The Flames took the lead at 7:19 of the first period. Matthew Tkachuk stole a puck at the Sharks blue line. He didn’t break stride as he skated at the Sharks net and shot the puck over Reimer’s shoulder.
The Sharks tied it with a goal off Nick Bonino’s skate at 14:29. Assists went to Jaycob Megna and Matt Nieto.
Trevor Lewis made it 2-1 for Calgary at 19:05, carrying the puck into the zone and all the way to the net to jam it past Reimer’s pad. Assists went to Rasmus Andersson and Noah Hanifin.
Elias Lindholm made it 3-1 at 13:28 of the second period. Tkachuk carried the puck across the line and then dropped it to a trailing Lindholm. Lindholm’s shot went between two defenders and over Reimer’s glove. Assists went to Tkachuk and Johnny Gaudreau.
The Sharks got the first six shots of the third period and were rewarded. Logan Couture cut the lead down with a power play goal at 5:24. Timo Meier sent the puck at the net from just above the goal line. Couture was at the net and the puck went off his leg and in. Assists went to Meier and Mario Ferraro.
James was injured midway through the third period after a collision with Couture who had tripped over Blake Coleman’s skate right in front of the net. Couture’s leg slid right into Reimer’s neck and head. There were no updates after the game about his injury.
The Sharks pulled Kahkonen with a little under 90 seconds left but lost control of the puck with 32 seconds left. The Flames went the other way and Lindholm scored into the empty net.
The Sharks power play had three opportunities and got three shots on net. Their penalty kill gave up seven shots to three Calgary power plays and had one short-handed shot. In the face-off circle, the Sharks won 48% of the draws. The Sharks blocked ten shots, Calgary blocked 20. Neither John Leonard nor Jonah Gadjovich, who both left the game Tuesday, were in the lineup.
The Sharks’ next game is on Saturday in Vancouver against the Canucks at 7:00 PM PT.